Which city is cheaper, Shanghai or Dubai?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Dubai and Shanghai can help you decide which place is right for you.
Dubai is a glamorous, opulent, and modern city. With plenty of activities and things to do, it's a huge city that draws plenty of visitors. The beauty of this spot is also one of the main reasons why visitors come. And you can't forget about the live music, food, and scuba diving and snorkeling.
Shanghai is a modern, cosmopolitan, and professional port city. Visitors will also find so much to do here because it's a large city with many sights and attractions. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.
Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Shanghai and Dubai. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.
You'll find a number of museums and attractions in both Shanghai and Dubai.
Many visitors head to Dubai specifically to visit some of its top-rated museums and other sights. The city's most famous landmark is the Burj Khalifa, which is the tallest building in the world. Head to the observation deck for stunning views.
Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in Shanghai that are not to be missed. The city's sights mix culture with modern innovation. From the futuristic skyline and the iconic waterfront area known as the Bund, to the classic Yu Garden, there are a diversity of sights around the city. There are also museums like the Shanghai Museum, which educate visitors on Chinese culture.
Foodies will find both Dubai and Shanghai both to be unique destinations.
Dubai has a number of nationally recognized food spots and restaurants. The national dish in the area is khuzi, or ghuzi, which is a meal of roasted lamb or mutton, prepared with rice vegetables and nuts.
Known for it's food and restaurant scene, Shanghai is always at the top of any foodie's travel list. The city's cuisine has a long history with many distinct traditional dishes. The foods incorporate a lot of soy sauce and sugar and you'll find most dishes are rice based as opposed to using wheat products. Popular local dishes include the famous Shanghai soup dumplings, steamed crab, and braised pork. The city is also famous for its snacks, which can be purchased at one of the many snack houses or street stalls.
Most visitors prefer the nightlife in Dubai.
People head to Dubai just to party. Frequented by the wealthy and opulent, the city has world class night clubs and DJs that travel from around to world to perform.
There's a variety of activities in the evening in Shanghai. A night out can quickly become very expensive. Many of the venues are spread out so you'll likely spend at least some of the time in a taxi. The Bund is one of the most popular areas for nightlife, but this area also has the most expensive bars and clubs. They often offer impressive views of Pudong and the Huangpu River though.
If you're looking to go shopping, Dubai and Shanghai both offer plenty of spots.
Many people travel to Dubai specifically to go shopping. With its many malls, souks, and shopping areas, this is the place to go for luxury shopping. Popular items to purchase include gold and diamond jewelry, shawls, and Persian rugs.
Shanghai is a famous shopping destination with plenty of stores. The city has many large shopping malls with department stores, name brand fashion, and trendy shops. It is also known for its cheap electronics and tailor-made clothes.
You'll find kid-friendly activities in either Dubai or Shanghai.
You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Dubai. This city has family-friendly resorts, skyscrapers with spectacular views, and amusement parks that are fun for the whole family. There are also plenty of fountains that the kids can splash around in.
Shanghai is a very family-friendly place to visit. Of course there's Disneyland, but kids will also enjoy soaking up the city's culture, trying fun new snacks, and exploring the many science and kid-friendly museums. There are also parks and outdoor spaces as well as skyscrapers and towers that offer incredible views of the city.
Couples will find a longer list of romantic activities in Shanghai than Dubai.
For those traveling as a couple, Shanghai has plenty to offer. With its east meets west personality, couples will be able to enjoy an amazing culinary experience, beautiful gardens, and luxury hotels and spas. There are many romantic areas around this bustling city, making it the perfect place for a romantic city getaway.
Dubai is a nice destination for couples. From the spectacular views to the high end resorts, couples can enjoy a romantic retreat to the city.
For students, both Dubai and Shanghai are fairly comparable places to visit.
Students come from all over the world to visit Dubai. Many major universities from around the world have campuses in this city, making this a top destination for international students.
Shanghai is a great city to visit as a student. The city attracts international and study abroad students who enjoy its long history and fascinating culture. It's a world financial capital with many businesses headquartered here, so employment opportunities are abundant.
Dubai and Shanghai both offer public transit to get you around.
While Dubai offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. The city's public transportation system includes buses, water buses, a monorail system, and a metro.
Many visitors rely on the effecient and affordable public transportation in Shanghai. There is a metro system as well as buses and taxis which are relatively affordable.
Shanghai is more walkable than Dubai.
Shanghai is a very walkable destination. It's possible to explore the major tourist areas on foot but it can be very hot and humid during the summer months.
Dubai is generally not very walkable. It is one of the less pedestrian-friendly cities around the world. There is lots of road work, even in the more walkable areas, so getting around on foot can be challenging.
In either Dubai or Shanghai, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Dubai than Shanghai because of the overall number of sights and activities.
The ideal length of time for a trip to Dubai is 3-7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Shanghai is 2-5 days.
Dubai is a big city with plenty to do. It's also a relaxing resort destination. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.
In Shanghai, many people enjoy the shopping and museums that this bustling big city offers. This port city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it.
Dubai is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.
It's hard to know how much time to spend in Shanghai. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.
Dubai is a popular choice for travelers. Five days here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Dubai, five days is sufficent for most. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.
Shanghai is a fun place to experience. In Shanghai, many people enjoy the nightlife and food that this big city destination offers. This would be the perfect place to spend five days, as it has just the right amount of activities.
Dubai is a great place to explore. It is common to spend one week here. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. One week is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Dubai has to offer. This city offers something for everyone.
You'll find food and shopping around the trendy big city of Shanghai. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Dubai is $198, while the average daily cost in Shanghai is $93. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Dubai and Shanghai in more detail.
Looking for a hotel in Dubai or Shanghai? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.
Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.
Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Dubai:
Also for Dubai, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Shanghai:
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Shanghai:
Prices for flights to both Shanghai and Dubai change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Dubai:
For Dubai, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Some typical examples of dining costs in Shanghai are as follows:
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Shanghai.
For Dubai, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Dubai.
Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Shanghai are as follows:
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Shanghai are as follows:
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Dubai:
Also in Shanghai, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Dubai and Shanghai, we can see that Dubai is more expensive. And not only is Shanghai much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. Since Dubai is in Middle East and Shanghai is in Asia, this is one of the main reasons why the costs are so different, as different regions of the world tend to have overall different travel costs. So, traveling to Shanghai would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Shanghai and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Dubai would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Dubai than you might in Shanghai.
Shanghai has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons, but Dubai experiences a tropical climate with fairly warm weather most of the year.
Both Shanghai and Dubai during the summer are popular places to visit. Dubai attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Furthermore, most visitors come to Shanghai for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences during these months.
Dubai can become quite hot in the summer. In July, Dubai is generally a little warmer than Shanghai. Temperatures in Dubai average around 35°C (95°F), and Shanghai stays around 28°C (83°F).
Shanghai gets a good bit of rain this time of year. Dubai usually gets less rain in July than Shanghai. Dubai gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 128 mm (5 in) of rain this time of the year. June to August is the dry season in Dubai.
The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Dubai and Shanghai. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Dubai throughout the year. Furthermore, the autumn months attract visitors to Shanghai because of the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area.
Dubai is much warmer than Shanghai in the autumn. The temperature in Dubai is usually 29°C (84°F) in October, and Shanghai stays around 19°C (65°F).
In October, Dubai usually receives less rain than Shanghai. Dubai gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 61 mm (2.4 in) of rain each month for the autumn.
The winter brings many poeple to Dubai as well as Shanghai. Plenty of visitors come to Dubai because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year. Additionally, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Shanghai this time of year.
It's quite cold in Shanghai in the winter. In the winter, Dubai is much warmer than Shanghai. Typically, the winter temperatures in Dubai in January are around 19°C (66°F), and Shanghai is about 4°C (39°F).
Dubai usually gets less rain in January than Shanghai. Dubai gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain this time of the year. January to March in Dubai is the rainy season.
Both Shanghai and Dubai are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. Dubai attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Also, many travelers come to Shanghai for the activities around the city and the natural beauty.
In April, Dubai is generally much warmer than Shanghai. Temperatures in Dubai average around 26°C (79°F), and Shanghai stays around 15°C (58°F).
It rains a lot this time of the year in Shanghai. In April, Dubai usually receives less rain than Shanghai. Dubai gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Shanghai receives 102 mm (4 in) of rain each month for the spring. The dry season in Dubai is June to August.
|Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)||Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)|
|Jan||19°C (66°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||4°C (39°F)||39 mm (1.5 in)|
|Feb||20°C (68°F)||40 mm (1.6 in)||5°C (41°F)||59 mm (2.3 in)|
|Mar||23°C (73°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||9°C (48°F)||82 mm (3.2 in)|
|Apr||26°C (79°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||15°C (58°F)||102 mm (4 in)|
|May||31°C (88°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||20°C (67°F)||113 mm (4.5 in)|
|Jun||33°C (91°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||24°C (75°F)||152 mm (6 in)|
|Jul||35°C (95°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||28°C (83°F)||128 mm (5 in)|
|Aug||36°C (97°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||28°C (82°F)||133 mm (5.2 in)|
|Sep||33°C (91°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||24°C (75°F)||156 mm (6.1 in)|
|Oct||29°C (84°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||19°C (65°F)||61 mm (2.4 in)|
|Nov||25°C (77°F)||10 mm (0.4 in)||13°C (55°F)||52 mm (2 in)|
|Dec||21°C (70°F)||20 mm (0.8 in)||7°C (44°F)||35 mm (1.4 in)|
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